Okay, you're probably starting to think that our "Friction Fridays" series is only about disasters, security and preparedness from the standpoint of your business' contingency plan. Sure, Mother Nature and/or the "evil one" can impact your company in one way or another.
Well, I'm here to tell you that it's just not true.
So, today, I'm going to "rub you raw" in an entirely different way. Let me ask you this, "Are prepared for your No. 1 employee to leave your company?”
You know, that key employee who "does all the work" that you take all the credit for.
What about if that employee leaving isn’t your numero uno employee, but the last really good employee you hired. “How will you deal with that?” And just what might be the common denominator as to why your staff is bailing on you?
Sure, you heard they told co-workers that were leaving for more money. But do you really believe that?
If so, I'm about to rub you really raw, because that's far less likely. The answer you don’t really want to hear is that the real reason they left, according to almost every manpower study in the last 10 years, is because of the "boss."
You are more than likely the main reason your best and brightest, as well as your newest and brightest are leaving for "the guy down the street."
Your employees don’t need to feel as if you're their best friend, but they do need to sense they have a positive relationship with you. How you and your employees get along, and how they interpret that relationship (either one) is what ties each one to you. Either that, or it is what drives a nail in the coffin of their employment.
Employees don't only need meaningful work, they need to feel that their work is meaningful to you, too. They need to see and hear how their work contributions make a difference to you and the organization as a whole.
You need to show them they clearly fit into the organizational goals, and that you earnestly appreciate their work and dedication. You employees want to see genuine appreciation and recognition, because a lack of recognition contributes to many of the other factors or reasons they leave.
One of the ways you provide for your employees' future is by sharing the vision of where you, your company and they are headed. You also must be the driving force.
You want loyalty from your employees and, believe it or not, they want loyalty from you. Some of the biggest factors that constitute loyalty in their eyes are the future, the future and the future. An employee wants to know you're looking out for their best interest when it comes to their career path. They want to know you haven’t just stuck them in a dead end job with no place to go. They are not looking for an "out the door" opportunity.
One of the ways you provide for your employees' future is by sharing the vision of where you, your company and they are headed. I wonder what would have happened to the Disney organization if Walt had just been content to sit in his office knowing he had given a few hundred workers a job in his first theme park, Disneyland?
No, Walt Disney was a visionary. His mind could see the next project, and the one after that, and the one after that. He shared those dreams with his "team" to make them a reality.
You also must be the driving force, just as Walt Disney was a visionary. You must be the motivation behind each and every "to do" that makes up the future of your company – just like Walt did.
He knew how to bring out the best in each person by providing the motivation to be – and to give – the best. The fact that Walt’s visions became reality by virtue of his employee motivation is evident in the corporate culture as well as the bricks and mortar he left behind.
Your employees look to you to be the motivation that brings out the greatness in them. Together, it turns dreams into reality.
Employees don't only need meaningful work, they need to feel that their work is meaningful to you, too.
Let's take "corporate culture." That's another factor that you, like Walt Disney, can define for your business. Maybe you haven’t sat down with pen and paper to set the marks for your culture, but one way another, you have a culture. Chances are if you haven’t taken the time to define it for the better, it has evolved for the worse.
A positive corporate culture is another thing that employees feel is essential to their sticking around. They are less interested in seeing the "fluff" of words on the pages of the employee handbook. They want to experience a beneficial culture – and that what to see that evidenced in you.
They want a culture of respect, value, benefits, compensation, recognition, perks and fun. It cannot be all show. They expect you to provide an environment that's conducive to their satisfaction, engagement and enjoyment.
This can be summed up in five simple words: "a great place to work."
If you're not following these basics in an effort to build the best possible work place for your employees, I have undoubtedly rubbed you raw in regards to how you deal with your employees. But now, imagine how your employees feel when they have to put up with your "rubbing them raw to the bone."